Choosing a phone for your CommCare project can be a hard decision. The Dimagi team has worked to make this decision a bit easier by testing numerous different phone models and documenting their performance. This page will provide you with the results of our testing as well as tips on how to choose the right phone for your project.
Issue with Huawei Phones produced May 2019 and onwards
Due to Google's revocation of Huawei's Android license, any Huawei devices produced after May 2019 would not support any Google apps including apps on the Google Play app store. This prohibits the ability to install and update CommCare using the Google Play app store on these devices and hence these Huawei devices are currently not recommended for CommCare usage.
Procure a Mobile Device Management Tool
We strongly recommend you procure a mobile device management tool to manage your devices, the data used on the devices, the apps used, and the time spent on each app. Dimagi has an MDM solution you can consider called Focus that is tailor-made for international development projects with low-or-no connectivity. We have seen large i-NGO's use MDM solutions to secure their patient/user data, save money with restricted data usage and increase their frontline productivity.
ANDROID PHONES - Click here to learn more about selecting an Android phone
Samsung Galaxy Mini
Samsung Galaxy S GT-7562
|Samsung Galaxy Xcover S5690||Y|
LAVA Iris 349+
|Samsung Galaxy Win Duos (GT-I8552)||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy Pocket Duos (GT-S5302)||Y||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy ACE NXT||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy ACE S5830||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy Core Prime SM-360H|
Samsung Galaxy Trend
|Samsung Galaxy Young Duos (S6310)||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy SIII Fame Lite S6790||Y|
|Huawei Ascend G510||Y|
|Huawei Ascend Y 511||Y|
Moto G (Turbo)
Samsung Galaxy J2
Samsung Grand Prime 4G
Micromax Canvas Juice 4 Q382
Karbonn Smart Titanium S205
Alcatel One Touch Pixi 3
Samsung Galaxy Grand Neo Plus
ANDROID TABLETS - Click here to learn more about selecting an Android tablet
|Samsung Galaxy Tab 4||Y||Y||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy Tab 3||Y||Y||Y|
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 V (Model T116NY)
Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite (Model T111)
|Samsung Galaxy Tab 2||Y||Y||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy Tab A SM-T510||Y|
|Micromax Funbook Alpha||Y|
|Micromax Funbook Infinity||Y|
|Onda V975s Core4|
iBall Slide 3Gi71
ASUS Zenpad C7.0
Forstar FT 710x
Alpha Tablet S707-DC
J2ME - Click here to learn more about selecting a J2ME phone
Phones Known to Work (not formally tested)
Dimagi Field Managers as well as other adventurous CommCare users have tested alternate phone models in the field with successful results. We have listed these phones below. These phones are good options for CommCare projects. As with all phones not on our recommended phone list, we suggest testing the phone to ensure it meets your project requirements before procuring multiple phones.
|HCL ME Sync 1.0 (U3)||Y||Supports multiple Indian languages|
|Reliance 3G Tablet||Y||Does not support Hindi font|
|Samsung Galaxy Young (GT-S6312)||Y||Supports Hindi, Odiya fonts in India|
|Samsung Xcover 2 (GT-S7710)||Y||Water and dust proof|
|Samsung Galaxy Star (GT-S5282)||Has been tested by FMs for Hindi & Kannada support, GPS works. Yet to load test and go through checklist|
Samsung Galaxy Star 2
Has not been formally load tested for performance. But, has been used in CommCare testing
|Samsung Star Pro||has been tested by FMs; works fine and supports Hindi, however processor feels significantly slower out-of-the-box|
|Samsung Galaxy Pocket (GT-S5301)||Has been tested by FMs; works fine |
Note: probably has the smallest screen for android, but is usually around $100
|Samsung Galaxy Y (S5360)||Y|
Will not allow installation on internal memory, only on SD card
Low internal memory
|Samsung Galaxy Y Pro (GT-B5510)||(works with most apps, but qwerty keyboard can be a bit problematic). Note: has a physical blackberry-style QWERTY keyboard.|
|Samsung Galaxy Note II (GT-N7100)||Has been tested by FMs; works fine|
|Samsung Galaxy Ace Plus (GT-S7500)||Has been tested by FMs; works fine|
|Samsung Galaxy S II (SGH-I777)||Has been tested by FMs; works fine|
|Tecno B3||Y||Widely deployed in West Africa for two projects but not formally tested.||Possibly out of stock and replaced by Tecno H3, which has been tested, deployed and found to work well|
|Tecno H3||Has been deployed and found to work well|
|Tecno Y3||Y||Has been tested by FMs; works fine|
Used in a Kenya deployment
|Huawei Ascend Y360||Y||Has been tested by FMs; works fine|
Used in a Kenya deployment
Phones with Known Limitations
The phones listed below all have known limitations. These phones may still be good options for a CommCare project depending on the projects needs. As with all phones not on our recommended phone list, we suggest testing the phone to ensure it meets your project requirements before procuring multiple phones.
Samsung Galaxy Y
|Samsung Galaxy Tab 3|
|Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1||Y|
|Samsung Galaxy S Duos|
|Lava Iris 351|
Lava Iris 349
|Lava Iris 349+|
|Nokia ASHA 206|
Penta T-Pad WS704Q
Lava Model P7+
LG Max X160
Alcatel OneTouch P310x
Samsung Galaxy J5 SM-J500
Dimagi actively searches low-cost Java feature phones on the market and frequently tests them if they support CommCare and their performance. Phone models that have been tested and do not support CommCare include:
- Nokia 108
- Nokia 220
- Nokia 225
- Nokia 230
- Nokia ASHA 501
- Samsung Metro Duos (C3322)
- Samsung Metro Duos (E2252)
- Samsung Guru Music
- LG A390
- Lava KKT31C
- Micromax X264
- Lava Ivory S1
- Lava Ivory Pop
- Ubislate l3G7
- Alpha Onida
- Lenovo Yoga Tablet 10
While it rarely happens, there have been a couple of projects during which FMs and the organization discovered that the phones purchased were counterfeit. While it is unclear whether there is a standard way, we propose the following for assessing the quality of the phones provided by the partner.
Counterfeit indicators for Android phones --
- Google Play Store is missing. It is not even worth attempting to download it via Google.com, as this is often a challenge (or simply will not work).
- The phone presents Chinese characters. Phones manufactured in China are notoriously of bad quality.
- Validate the IMEI number. Generally, the 7th and 8th digits of the 15-digit number will tell you where the phone was manufactured (hence, its likely quality). See here for more information: http://www.spotafakephone.com/how-to-tell.cfm and here for IMEI testing: http://www.numberingplans.com/?page=analysis&sub=imeinr.
- Your CommCare application crashes when you arrive at a date question.
- Batteries die much more quickly than they should.
- The phone has difficulty connecting to the internet.
- Any other missing features that the phone should have. It is important to know the phone model's functionality before purchasing so as to check whether that functionality is missing on the phone you are testing.